Liberty cannot be preserved without a general knowledge among the people, who have a right … an indisputable, indefeasible, divine right, to that most dreaded and envied kind of knowledge, I mean of the characters and conduct of their rulers.

—John Adams. A Dissertation on the Canon and Feudal law, 1765.

Transparency in government is more than an expedient constitutional check—it is an indisputable, indefeasible, divine right of the people. Just as beneficiaries are entitled to a full accounting from their trustees, so are the people entitled to know exactly what their government is doing in their name and to their detriment.

This article is an extract from the book ‘Principles of Good Government’ by Matthew Bransgrove